Preview: Nashville SC v Portland Timbers FC

After a disappointing exit from the US Open Cup, Nashville SC are back at GEODIS Park to take on the Portland Timbers. The Coyotes will be looking to make it two wins in a row and reinstate there dominance at home. The Timbers will be looking to spoil the party and extend their own win streak to three games.

Nashville SC

Current standing: 6th (West) | 6-5-5 | +3 GD

OUT: Handwalla Bwana (thigh), Robert Castellanos (ankle), Aníbal Godoy (thigh)

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Nashville SC come in to tonight’s match on short rest and having played an extra 30 minutes of soccer. Luckily for the Boys in Gold, their opponents are also on short rest and are faced with a cross country tryip.

Coach Gary Smith, will have a mostly healthy squad, however, Aníbal Godoy picked up a knock in training last friday and faces a few weeks on the sidelines. Smith will have to evaluate who is ready after a long Wednesday night.

The one change that we can almost guarantee to see is Sean Davis will come back into the midfield after a very short appearance in the Open Cup. With Portland’s strong midfield, I expect to see Davis paired with captain Dax McCarty.

Up top, C.J. Sapong and Hany Mukhtar both played less than 90 minutes and are almost guaranteed to start from the off. We have sen Randall Leal be the third attacker in the group but I am expecting to see see Aké Loba rotate in for Leal.

If Nashville is able to keep their attacking momentum going, they should be able to get a result against Portland.

Portland Timbers FC

Current standing: 9th (West) | 5-7-6 | 0 GD

QUESTIONABLE: Claudio Bravo (foot)
Diego Gutierrez (foot), Cristian Paredes (hamstring)

The Portland Timbers made the MLS Cup final but have struggled to reach those same heights this season due to an injury plagued season. However, the Timbers have begun to get healthy and find themselves unbeaten in the league.

Led by Coach Giovanni Savarese, the Timbers will lineup in their favored 4-2-3-1 formation. They will look to sit back and absorb pressure but will look for pressing triggers to win the ball back and transition quickly on the break. They will look to outlast a Nashville team that should be a bit tired after playing an extra 30 minutes of soccer.

Pod picks

Jonathan Slape

Score: Nashville 2 – 1 Portland
Scorers: Hany Mukhtar, C.J. Sapong
MOTM: Hany Mukhtar
Bold Prediction: Loba starts and gets an assists

Andy Simmons

Score: Nashville 1 – 0 Portland
Scorers: C.J. Sapong
MOTM: Hany Mukhtar
Bold Prediction: Nashville has twice as many shots on target as Portland.

Ben Wright

Score: Nashville 2 – 0 Portland
Scorers: Hany Mukhtar, Aké Loba
MOTM: Hany Mukhtar
Bold Prediction: Aké Loba starts.

Fan Forecast

Match Info

Teams: Nashville SC vs Portland Timbers FC
Odds: Nashville (-145), Draw (+270), Portland (+375) via BetMGM
Date: Sunday, July 3
Time: 7:00 PM Central, GEODIS Park, Nashville, Tennessee
Radio: iHeartRadio Online (English); El Jefe 96.7 (Spanish)
Forecast: 89°/73°. Partly Cloudy 15% chance of rain. 76% humidity

Author: Jonathan Slapeoriginated from outside of Atlanta but has lived in Nashville since 2005. Original member of Speedway Soccer and has been talking and occasionally writing about Nashville SC since the USL days. Self proclaimed official fashion correspondent. Outside of Nashville SC you can find him singing the praises of Jurgen Klopp, discussing the latest in sneakers and soccer fashion with a good stiff drink.

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